After finishing one semester, I want to share my experience as an international master’s student at Chalmers. I like how Chalmers manages to continuously evaluate their education system by conducting course reviews together with the students at the end of each course. How big is the impact that students have for Chalmers’ future education?
Back to my previous university in Indonesia, the students could also share their opinion on how the course was conducted and give suggestions or ideas for future improvement. But here at Chalmers, I have a different feeling after participating in the evaluation process because of the method that Chalmers uses to involve their students. At Chalmers, every course has student representatives selected randomly. Luckily, I have been chosen as a student representative in two courses to contribute more to the feedback system. I feel that the feedback system at Chalmers is transparent, systematic, and using a user-friendly online platform.
The students fill the form online and the results are clearly followed up by the teachers. Within each course, the student representatives will have two course evaluation meetings directly with the lecturer. As one of the chosen students in the class, I represent the students’ perspectives during course evaluation. I am so honoured to give more suggestions in person in addition to the online questionnaire. Plus! Student representatives got a Chalmers Store
gift cards to spend on cool Chalmers merchandise and school stuff!
In the mid-term evaluation meeting, my friends, my teachers, and I discussed the students’ and the examiners’ view of the present course condition. I could share anything I feel about the class, including the amount of the homework, the deadline for each assignment, the teaching method used, even the portion for the grading. Suggestions from this meeting will become considerations to evaluate and run the rest of the course. For example, as I am a Nanotechnology student, I work a lot with formulas. I felt that the explanation of formula in the lectures was unclear, as some of the formulas have no information for each symbol. And guess what? The programme really did something with my suggestion! The lecture materials were improved immediately in the next classes with clearer formulas in each study material. Every feeling and statement conveyed during the meeting are openly discussed. The feeling of being heard and having an impact on Chalmers’ education is a luxurious thing for me, as a student.
In the final evaluation course meeting, the teachers, the student representatives, and the representative of the programme board walked through every question and all answers in the questionnaire from all students. We got a comprehensive overview of the course and able to develop it further before the course is conducted in the next period. I agree with the term that “feedback is a gift”. Ideas that come directly from students can be major influence for Chalmers’ and the students’ future.